Cheap Marketing Ploys (Mania.com)

By:Troy Roberts
Date: Friday, March 28, 2003


Are there really some games that we can do without? I mean, lets think about it. Wouldn't we be better off if developers wouldn't take some of our favorite ideas, game characters or franchises and spin them off into some weird game to make extra cash? I think so, because for one it shows that the developers are not above cheap marketing ploys.


I was looking through my game collection recently and came across some games that should probably not exist. Let's take STAR WARS: MASTERS OF TERAS KASI for example. I'm not exactly sure whose bright idea it was to come up with a fighting game with the characters from STAR WARS, but it obviously didn't work. The controls were horrid and unresponsive, and why would anyone want to play this game when you could play a much better game with any of the MORTAL KOMBATS or STREET FIGHTERS (or at the time, TEKKENS).


And since I just mentioned MORTAL KOMBAT, how many of you remember the dud PS game MK MYTHOLOGIES / SUB ZERO? I'm sure a few of you do. I bought the game - it was one of those things you just had to get if you were a MORTAL KOMBAT fan. Big mistake. The game blew chunks hard. Taking characters out of their normal elements and putting them into something new just doesn't work most of the time.


My newest gripe about these types of games is WWE CRUSH HOUR. Have you seen this? This is a car combat game starring all of your favorite wrestlers from the federation. Now, unless something has changed in the past few years without me knowing, wrestling is...well, wrestling. I don't remember much about car combat (although I can see how the "sport" is moving in that direction). And I'm sure more than a few wrestling fans have picked up this game just because their favorite wrestlers are in it - not because the game has any substance or anything.


Now, there are a few games that have done it right - taking everyone's favorite characters and putting them into something new. Nintendo did this perfectly with SMASH BROS., which, will different, was loads of fun to play and highly addictive. But it seems like a diamond in the rough when compared to most games like it.


If you're going to pull popular characters or franchises from a game and put them in something else, do us all a favor and be sure to at least make the game halfway decent. If it isn't, don't bother releasing it - gaming isn't all about the money.


TIDBITS


Sony has announced that it will publish the newest ARC THE LAD game, TWILIGHT OF THE SPIRTS, here in the US...Artifact Entertainment's MMORPG HORIZONS will be published by Atari...Blizzard has announced a map contest for the WARCRAFT III expansion, THE FROZEN THRONE. Check the official site for more details...COMMAND AND CONQUER GENERALS has retaken the number one selling PC game for this week...


RED FACTION II


ON SHELVES



It doesn't look like there is a ton coming out this week, so I'm actually going to give the nod to RED FACTION II because it is being released on Xbox, GameCube and PC. Also, I'm sure some people will look into DEF JAM VENDETTA.


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